University reinstates mask mandate 

With the escalating number of COVID-19 cases due to the highly contagious omicron variant, and the strain that escalation is putting on the healthcare system, Pittsburg State University will reinstate the campus-wide mask mandate starting Tuesday, Jan. 11. 

The university’s goal is to have a safe and fully operational semester, and weather what university leaders hope will be a short-term surge. According to public health officials, masks are an important tool in mitigating virus spread and achieving that goal. 

All faculty, staff, students, and visitors are required to wear a mask that covers their nose and mouth while indoors on campus, with few exceptions. Though mild, breakthrough cases among the vaccinated are growing and represent a public health risk, therefore even vaccinated individuals must wear a mask. The mandate applies to everyone as the university follows the latest science.  

Though the CDC’s mask guidelines have not changed since October, the agency now publicly suggests looking for masks that meet new standards from the American Society for Testing and Materials and have been signed off on by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, specifically switching from cloth masks to surgical or better (KN95, KF94, and N99). 

The university’s mask policy can be found at